Hello, dear readers! I thought it would be fun to do a summer recap in a form of an alphabet, so I gave it a try and wrote my own summer 2018 alphabet. It was an eventful summer, and it was interesting to reflect on it in this way. 

A is for ART

I'm really happy that this summer I earned another art course degree with Michelangelo Gallery. This is my fourth art course degree. I didn't study art, but I'm not a self-taught artist either.  I don't have a degree in Art ( I have a master's in English), but for a few years now I've been taking classes with Michelangelo Gallery Mostar and it was such a great experience. The reason I can't really say that I'm a self- taught artist is because I had wonderful teachers there. I did learn some things by myself, but I've also learned lots from others. This applies to both fashion illustrations (that I sometimes share on my blog) and more classical paintings. I'm learning as I go, and I'm always trying to improve my art skills and challenge myself.

             B is for B1 language certificate

This summer I finally earned a B1 language certificate for Italian language. I enrolled in A2 course at the start of the year. I already knew some Italian so I figured I better start with A2 instead of A1 and I guess I was right because I had had no problem passing the A2 test earlier this year. I'm really happy that I got my B1 course degree. I'm not sure will I be able to continue studying at this language school because there may not be enough students interested for a B2 class, but even if I don't I can always continue studying on my own. I love Italian language and culture, so I enjoyed this language course a lot. I've been reading books in Italian for a long time now, but I need more practice speaking and writing. Bellow you can see my painting of Florence. This painting is also available as a print on a variety of products in my Redbubble shop (you can see how it looks on a tshirt here).

acrylic on paper

C is for COURSES

I've been taking lots of courses and I happy about that. I'm a big believer that we should never stop learning. Courses typically cost both time and money, but I'd rather spend money on my education then on something else. I know enough about life to know that if you want to get better at something, you need to put in time and work. So, new courses it will be. Currently I'm attending my two courses. 

D is for DRESSES

This summer has been extremely warm, so I opted for dresses a lot. I've been a fan of wearing dresses in summer since I can remember, but this summer I really enjoyed it to the max. Here are some of my favourite picks.

1/ 2/ 3/ 4 / 5


I'm a big fan of embroidery in every shape and form,  so I was really happy to see yet another season of embroidered items trending. One of my highlights this summer was this cute bikini with blue embroidery. I only wore this bikini to sunbathe on my balcony one afternoon, because I haven't had any time to sunbathe this summer, but still I'd say it counts. Embroidery always looks beautiful and delicate. Knowing how to do embroidery has been helping me in learning fashion sewing details. 


I have fallen in love with fashion illustration a long time ago. This summer I managed to make quite a few fashion illustrations. I also started to experiment with editing a little bit. I've started to mix my photography with my fashion illustrations. These two medias are very different, so it's simply fabulous to discover that they seem to get along. I'm very excited about working more on creating art collages that would include both my illustrations and my photography.


Being grateful for what we have is so important. Despite some set backs I encountered this summer, I had so many things I could genuinely feel grateful for. I got the opportunity to study and learn new things. I didn't go on a typical vacation, but I did enjoy some lovely day trips. I've read some pretty amazing books, and seen some really good art. It was a good summer by my standards. 


My hair actually got better this summer. Generally speaking my hair has been pretty healthy and it hadn't been affected by my health problems and anemia until recently. When my hairdresser warned me that my hair has suffered some damage and suggested some hair masks, I decided to go for natural hair masks. I googled natural hair masks, but I was to lazy to mix different ingredients together, so just applied some olive oil to my hair from time to time (usually a day before I would wash my hair), and my hair got healthier in a short time. So, if you've suffered hair damage due to anemia, this is what helped me. I'm really happy with my hair right now, and I keep wearing it down.
Dress: here


I can't tell you how happy I am to have been able to keep this feature running. This Summer I have illustrated a couple of really cute combos! Finding time to illustrate other bloggers is never easy, but it's something that makes me very very happy. This feature is definitely one of my favourite ones on this little place to call my own.


In the past I was really into making and designing jewelley. While I don't make jewellery as often as I used to, I still wear and enjoy jewellery. This summer I've been wearing my own jewellery quite often. The necklace you can see bellow (placed next to my fashion illustration was one of my 'go to' necklaces this summer. I'm a big fan of statement necklaces, and wearing those I made myself is always fun.


Krstitelj is a novel by Croatian author Miro Gavran that I immensely enjoyed. Krstitelj in Croatian means Baptist and the novel retells the life of John the Baptist. What I love most about this book is that it shows another side to Salome, portraying her as a complex character. Salome in the book is not a negative character, but rather a positive one.  I'm not sure is this novel translated yet, but Miro Gavran is the most widely translated Croatian author (and the only living author to have a theater festival devoted to only to him, and in a foreign country at that!) so you'll probably be able to find at least some of his works. 


Leggings are so practical that I wonder how I ever lived without them. Do you ever feel the same? How did we ever live without leggings? I hope they won't go out of fashion anytime soon. I have worn leggings often this summer. What about you?


Human bodies are made for movement, that's something I repeat to myself a lot. Taking the time to go hiking or even to go for a short walk is extremely important, especially if we are not that physically active in our work place (and most of us aren't). These photographs bellow were taken when we went hiking to a nearby hill. Not only did we end up feeling relaxed, but we also collected some wild berries that I have used to make cakes and home made products. It was a win win situation and one of my favourite moments this summer. Nothing beats a walk in a fresh air! Plus, wearing this all striped look was so much fun. 

N is for NERETVA

I love this river so much. It's beautiful during any season and I just can't get enough of it. Neretva is simply magical. I have spent majority of this summer in the city I'm based in, and that would be Mostar. I was too busy with taking classes and I ended up being too ill to go on a vacation, but in retrospect my summer wasn't that bad. Moreover, what this summer has taught me is that I do love  two things: Mostar and Neretva river. Mostar is a beautiful city and Neretva is a gorgeous river. In that sense, I consider myself fortunate to have an opportunity to live here. 


Another year, another traumatic and painful operation that didn't help with what is supposed to help with. It was a hard blow, but I'm doing my best to deal with it. As they say, there is no point is crying over spilled milk.

P is for PENCIL

I didn't think pencil was my media. I was always more attracted to oil , acrylics, watercolour paints and so on. But I learned to really enjoy working with pencil. Now, both pencil and coloured pencil are mediums I reach for. I try to find time for sketching because that seems like a pretty good way to keep one's creative juices going.


Last summer was a summer of questioning. I don't have all the answers, but I think I might be getting somewhere with my questions.


We had a few relaxing lunches there this summer and shot some cute photographs (that I'm sharing today). Located in the vicincy of Mostar city, it's a lovely restaurant to visit. I love the vineyards that surround the area. If you are looking for a place to take photographs at in the area surrounding Mostar, this restaurant is a pretty good option.

S is for SPLIT

My hometown. I had spent only a couple of days in Split this summer, the reason for that being my operation and other stuff that has kept me away. I did have a nice time those few days  I was there. This summer (like the last one) meant not having a single beach day. Yes, that's right. I haven't swam in the sea for two full years. If someone would have told me that would happen some day, I wouldn't believe them. However, last time I was there I went for a walk by the sea. It is always lovely to visit Split city.


One of the my summer reads that stayed with me was My Universities by Maxim Gorky. This book made me realize how the best University we can get is the one we can't pay to attend- the life itself. My Universities is one of Gorky's autobiographical books, and I plan to read the others as well. 


I had a lot of fun illustrating the September British Vogue cover. Maybe I should try illustrating Vogue Covers a bit more often? I do find covers fascinating, for a variety of reasons. They can be so telling when it comes to trends. I've seen some really beautiful covers over the years. 

W is for WINE

I don't drink wine for health reasons, but I'm fascinated by wine culture. Croatia  (the country I come from) has such a rich winery tradition. Moreover, Herzegovina (the region I live in) is famous for its wines. This summer I have been translating one book about wine, and in the process I feel like I have learned a lot. Wine is a fascinating subject indeed!

X is for XIRAN XUE

I finally found the time to read The Good Women of China: Hidden Voices this summer. It is a hauntingly sad novel, but also at the same time encouraging in its portrayal of the power of the female spirit. Full review here

Z is for a ZIPPERS

I have told you that I'm taking a fashion sewing class with a local designer, haven't I? Well, one of the things I learned there is how to properly sew a zipper. Any kind of zipper. I had no idea there were so many zippers out there and so many ways to sew them in. I had no idea that the zipper can really break or make a dress. I definitely learned a lot about zippers.



  1. I loved reading this post Ivana! I think it was very creative how you incorporated all the things you did during the Summer along with each letter of the alphabet. You look beautiful in your pictures, and as always you did an amazing job with your illustrations! Happy Monday!

  2. I loved reading this post, Ivana.
    I'm so sorry that the operation didn't help. You have the best perspective though and I hope I can be so positive when things like that happen!!
    You are so inspirational with your classes. It's always so good for us to keep learning...even when you're old like me!!

    1. I believe one is young as long as one keeps learning.

  3. Lovely post dear! Have a great week! xx

  4. So cool post! Have a nice week, dear!

  5. I LOVED reading your post. You are such a creative writer. Firstly, you slayed in all your dresses. Congrats on your art course degree. Your illustrations are so beautiful. I admire your positive energy and attitude. I am sorry to hear about your operation. I wish you good health and much happiness.


  6. This is such a interesting and great post. I really enjoy reading your alphabet and learn a lot about you. Your illustration are amazing.

  7. Wow these are some gorgeous photos! Your artwork is absolutely amazing!

  8. This was so fun to read, great way to recap summer.That's amazing you speack Italian, I really want to learn it one day, it will be my fifth language that I will speak.
    Your fashion illustrations are always so beautiful. Happy new week dear.

    Nina's Style Blog

  9. Thanks a lot :D

    you always have the most interesting posts my friend!

    InstagramFacebook Official PageMiguel Gouveia / Blog Pieces Of Me :D

  10. Io mi sa che non arriverei alla D!!! Ah ah ah ah ah ah!!!
    Sono contenta che tu abbia preso il B1, sei bravissima in italiano sai????
    Don't Call Me Fashion Blogger

  11. Fantastic Post Ivana! Great Outfits and beautiful Illustrations <3

    Happy October for you, kisses

  12. What a great post, lots to be happy about - interesting trips, great books, wine, healthy hair and dresses! I love your collage of you in dresses and of you surrounded by your illustrations.
    I'm sorry the operation didn't do the trick, I hope the doctor can find a solution to your troubles. xxx

  13. Such a fun and creative way to look back on your summer! :) Great news on the language course too, well done! I'm not very gifted with languages, I'm always impressed by people who do it so flawlessly!

    Hope that you are having a good start to your week so far :)

    Away From The Blue Blog

  14. Me encantan tus dibujos creo que son fascinantes !!

  15. Drago mi je što je tvoje leto obeležilo mnogo divnih stvari! Žao mi je zbog neuspele operacije i poteškoća s kojima si se suočila, ali pregrmećeš ti to. <3

  16. That's really cool and interesting. Congrat's, Ivana! I'd love to learn Italian language)))

    1. Thank you Oksana. Italian is a beautiful language and a good choice for Slavic speakers.

  17. Ma che idea carina hai avuto a riassumere così la tua estate, Ivana! :D
    Innanzi tutto complimenti per aver raggiunto il livello B1 in Italiano (lo so che è una lingua difficile)!
    Hai fatto proprio un sacco di cose questa estate, e le tue foto sono sempre tanto tanto carine e stilose!

  18. Great post dear, so nice and interesting, love it!

  19. Hi Ivana! First of all - you did great work on this post, because I literally see your huge effort to create it - the collages are terrific, dear! What about post, I'm happy that you earned B1 language certificate - it's huge achievement, what's more good to know that you're one of those, who rather to spend their money on education than on material stuff.
    Take care, dear!

    1. thank you. It's always better to spend on education than on material things.

  20. What a fun idea! I really like your A-Z. I'm with you on the leggings! They are super comfy and better than tights- I wear them instead of tights when I can under skirts/dresses.
    I can't believe you haven't swum in the sea for so long!
    I really like the dress you wore in restaurant photos- so pretty!
    That's so cool about you doing courses- I really want to do a dress making one and learn another language- I love languages! Bravo to you for learning Italian!

    1. I love languages too. I think they can teach us a lot about culture!

  21. This is such a unique and creative way to recap your summer. You definitely had a lot going on. Really cool that you're learning to sew and that you got your B1 language certificate for Italian language. It's stimulating to keep on learning.

  22. This is so adorable dear! You did a great job in this post. Love it!

    Jessica |

  23. Great post dear, so nice and interesting. I really like your A-Z.

  24. Hello there Ivana, hope you're doing great and that you're taking advantages of the last summer days :D

    I liked to read this summer recap but in a different way, as you told us with the alphabet, such a creative and ordered way to tell us your summer adventures and the things you enjoyed the most. Personally I love the F for Fashion Illustration and all your book recommendations, I feel like I needed to draw more this summer but at least I had plenty of nice readings and inspirational magazines. I also liked the S for Split, still craving this place in my bucket list.

    Oooh and congrats on your language certificate! This kind of things are difficult to do so a big star to congratulate it :D


  25. Estou encantada com tudo, parabéns! Bjo

  26. love this post, its such a cool way to recap summer and you did it so well!

  27. This post so amazing!! Your photos are beautiful

  28. hope you're doing great and that you're taking advantages of the last summer days :D

    Wow, you made me happy by doing this post, very interesting post Ivana,
    So nice to read your summer recap in this unique way. You are a creative person so have done this thing in this creative and ordered way. I loved to read your summer adventures, the learning courses, fashion illustration and all the recommendation of books. It's really great that you are still learning. You are right that there is no age limit when it comes to learn something.
    I want to say congratulation to you for the certificate of new language. You are looking so pretty even in all pictures. Also happy that you find your hair healthy now. I also have used olive oil on my hair but it didn't work much. I'm suffering from hair fall.
    Hope you are feeling good now.
    Have a great day.
    Love <3

    Oooh and congrats on your language certificate! This kind of things are difficult to do so a big star to congratulate it :D

    1. thank you dear. Have you tried coconut oil? I sometimes use that on my hair too.

  29. Your A-Z list is so fun to read. You're right about gratefulness and movement for the body, mind and spirit! These are some of the things I incorporate a lot this year. For as long as I live, I will never stop learning. I'm intrigued that you can speak Italian! How amazing. I don't know anything about the language but I think it is a very beautiful one as I have heard in shows. It's amazing that olive oil helped your hair. I usually use coconut oil, castor and sesame oil. I'm growing out the colored bits to transition into my original hair. :) Have a lovely week dear :) xoxo

    1. Italian is a beautiful language, it's definitely one of my favourite ones.

  30. WOW! What a fun way to reflect on your Summer! I am impressed that you actually were able to find something significant for each letter of the alphabet! I wonder whether I could reflect on my year and find something for each letter? It's a wonderful challenge, and I might try. Even if it's not the full alphabet, just a few letters, I still love the idea.

    1. thank you, writing this list was actually therapeutic for me because it made me realize that there are so many things to be grateful for.

  31. PS I didn't know that you have Masters in English. I am self-taught in English, my degree is in the Russian language and literature. I admire your energy and perseverance in studies! Despite all the obstacles (health and such), you spend so much time and energy to learn new skills - bravo, you are a true inspiration, dear Ivana! And I agree with you (and Gorky) - life is the best university.

    1. I'm grateful to have been able to study both Croatian and English, but life is indeed the best University. There's always so much to learn!

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